Whether a stock has the potential to offer considerable returns is determined primarily by its earnings and valuation ratios. Simultaneously, it is important to check whether its price performance exceeds its peers or the industry average.
On such comparison, if we find that a stock is unable to match up to wider sectoral growth despite having impressive earnings momentum or valuation multiples, it may be better to avoid it.
However, those outperforming their respective industries or benchmarks should be included in your portfolio, since they have a higher chance of securing significant returns. Picking a stock that outperforms its peers ensures that you have a winning option on your hands.
Then again, it is imperative that you determine whether or not an investment has relevant upside potential when considering stocks with significant relative price strength. Stocks delivering better than the S&P 500 over a period of 1 to 3 months at the least and having solid fundamentals indicate room for growth and are the best ways to go about this strategy.
Finally, it is important to find out whether analysts are optimistic about the upcoming earnings results of these companies. In order to do this, we have added positive estimate revisions for the current quarter’s (Q1) earnings to our screen. When a stock undergoes an upward revision, it leads to additional price gains.
Relative % Price change – 12 weeks greater than 0
Relative % Price change – 4 weeks greater than 0
Relative % Price change – 1 week greater than 0
(We have considered those stocks that have been outperforming the S&P 500 over the last 12 weeks, four weeks and one week.)
% Change (Q1) Est. over 4 Weeks greater than 0: Positive current quarter estimate revisions over the last four weeks.
Zacks Rank equal to 1: Only Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stocks – that have returned more than 26% annually over the last 26 years and surpassed the S&P 500 in 23 of the last 26 years – can get through. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Current Price greater than or equal to $5 and Average 20-day Volume greater than or equal to 50,000: A minimum price of $5 is a good standard to screen low-priced stocks, while a high trading volume would imply adequate liquidity.
VGM Score less than or equal to B: Our research shows that stocks with a VGM Score of A or B when combined with a Zacks Rank #1 or #2 (Buy) offer the best upside potential.
Here are five of the 19 stocks that made it through the screen:
Plexus Corp. PLXS: Plexus is a leading provider of electronic contract manufacturing services to original equipment manufacturers in a wide range of industries. The FY 2020 Zacks Consensus Estimate for this Neenah, WI-based company is $3.98, indicating some 16% earnings per unit growth over FY 2019. Next fiscal year’s average forecast is $4.51 pointing to another 13.3% growth. Plexus has a VGM Score of B.
Costamare Inc. CMRE: A leading owner and charterer of containerships to major liner companies, Costamare has a VGM Score of A. Over 30 days, the Greece-based company has seen the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2019 and 2020 increase 25.7% and 19.2%, to 88 cents and 93 cents per share, respectively.
United Therapeutics Corporation UTHR: United Therapeutics, headquartered in Silver Spring, MD, engages in the development and commercialization of therapeutic products for patients with chronic and life-threatening diseases. The firm has a VGM Score of A and an excellent earnings surprise history, having surpassed estimates in each of the last four quarters.
Intel Corporation INTC: Intel is the world’s largest manufacturer of semiconductor products. Sporting a VGM Score of A, this Santa Clara, CA-headquartered company’s expected EPS growth rate for three to five years currently stands at 7.5%, comparing favorably with the industry's growth rate of 5.9%.
First American Financial Corporation FAF: Founded in 1889 and headquartered in Santa Ana, CA, First American Financial serves homebuyers and sellers, real estate professionals, loan originators and servicers, commercial property professionals, homebuilders and others involved in residential and commercial property transactions with products and services specific to their needs. The company has a VGM Score of A and an impeccable earnings surprise history, having surpassed estimates in each of the last four quarters.
You can get the rest of the stocks on this list by signing up now for your 2-week free trial to the Research Wizard and start using this screen in your own trading. Further, you can also create your own strategies and test them first before taking the investment plunge.
The Research Wizard is a great place to begin. It's easy to use. Everything is in plain language. And it's very intuitive. Start your Research Wizard trial today. And the next time you read an economic report, open up the Research Wizard, plug your finds in, and see what gems come out.
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Disclosure: Officers, directors and/or employees of Zacks Investment Research may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material. An affiliated investment advisory firm may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material.
Disclosure: Performance information for Zacks’ portfolios and strategies are available at: https://www.zacks.com/performance.
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Costamare Inc. (CMRE) : Free Stock Analysis Report
First American Financial Corporation (FAF) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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Intel Corporation (INTC) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Plexus Corp. (PLXS) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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